Monkey Balooza


There was a time when monkeys ruled the land. In his golden age, the ubiquitous primate conquered the big screen with Clint Eastwood and Mathew Broderick, baffled linguists by learning sign language and delighted knick-knack collectors by striking that see-no-evil-hear-no-evil-etcetera pose.

The infinitely entertaining monkey, however, is a thing of the past. It could be that the immense talents of the Jack Russell terrier, and more recently the pug, have proven too adorable a rival for the monkey. Maybe that chimp next to Will Farrell in Night at the Roxbury wasn’t silly enough? Or, I suppose, it might be that beauty killed the beast. Regardless of the reason, monkeys don’t amuse anyone anymore.

The infinite monkey theorem speculates that a monkey randomly pounding keys on a typewriter for an infinite amount of time will eventually chance upon typing the lyrics to “Yes, We Have No Bananas.” Sure, it’s not very likely, but it is possible!

Now it turns out this monkey isn’t a monkey at all, but a hilarious metaphor for an abstract device that produces a random sequence of letters. As I’m sure many computer scientists tangled up in strings have done before, we have created one of these abstract devices. We’ve challenged our monkey to make his species proud and, sooner rather than later, type up the pleasurable song lyrics. In doing so, we hope to prove that monkeys can entertain again.

Our monkey, named Ben, will type a new page of letters every tenth of a second until he gets the song lyrics correct.

Click here to check in on our typing monkey- maybe he’s done.